Friday, 30 July 2010

The A-Team review

The A-Team (12A, 118 mins)
Director: Joe Carnahan
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

If The Karate Kid hasn’t made all you 80s nostalgists misty eyed, then this one surely will. The Saturday teatime action romp makes the move from the telly to the big screen with all its characters intact: leader and the man with the plan, Hannibal Smith (Liam Neeson); smooth talking Face (Bradley Cooper); muscleman B.A. Baracus (ultimate fighting champion turned actor Quintin ‘Rampage’ Jackson) and crazy Murdock (District 9’s Sharlto Copley). They're army rangers based in Iraq where a mission to find counterfeit money ends with them framed and in jail. As they attempt to clear their name through a series of elaborate and increasingly ridiculous set pieces, the frenetic action that ensues is often imaginative but much too reliant on over the top CGI, although watching Hannibal’s plans come together offers moderate levels of fun. It’s incredibly loud and hypnotically dumb, although that’s not necessarily a criticism, but the problem is it frequently treats the audience the same way. A nice cast helps but it’s really not as funny as it ought to be, and a little more polish to the script could have made all the difference.

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